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Alex Highsmith not going to lose his “walk-on mentality” after new contract

There are some stories in the NFL which some people wouldn’t believe. Stories that if you took them to Disney and pitched them as a movie, they would laugh and push the script back at you saying no one would truly think that could happen.

The story of Alex Highsmith could very well fit into that category.

Out of high school Highsmith wasn’t recruited to attend and play college football anywhere. He attended Charlotte and walked on. As a walk-on player, he had to earn every snap and every repetition in both practice and games. Any player who had to work their tail off to rise through the ranks is likely to keep that mindset with them no matter where they are in their career.

Highsmith calls it the “walk-on mentality”, and he isn’t planning on losing that edge despite his hefty new contract he received.

“It’s something I’ll always have.” Highsmith said in a press conference at the UMPC Rooney Sports Complex Monday. “The walk-on mentality is something that will stick with me forever. Just being back in college, getting there in 2015, with no offers, zero stars and not even being at camp my freshman year. As soon as I got there to Charlotte I just wanted to out-work everyone and be the best that I could.

“I carry that mindset with me today because there are always people who are working to be better than you, so continue to work as hard as I can to be the best for this team is what I’m going to do.”

Highsmith is a player who prides himself in his work ethic, and said he’s been working out with team captain Cam Heyward a lot this offseason getting his body ready for training camp which is about to kick off Wednesday July 26th.

Speaking of camp, Highsmith is happy a deal got done before the start of camp. He didn’t want the distraction, and would rather focus on ways he can improve. Ways like improving on his “get off” as well as finishing his pass rush moves.

With the new deal in the rearview mirror, there is only one thing to focus on for Highsmith, and it’s winning. He doesn’t have to worry about leveraging himself with the organization, but just winning. And by winning Highsmith made his goals crystal clear.

Win a Super Bowl.

With T.J. Watt and Highsmith both under contract for the foreseeable future, the Steelers will sport one of, if not the, best pass rushing tandems in the NFL. Will Highsmith be able to duplicate his 14.5 sack performance form 2022? Could he even best that mark?

Don’t ever doubt someone with the walk-on mentality…


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